Town Centre Windows Competition
Helping you thrive
To celebrate the re-opening of our high streets, Barnet Council is hosting a competition to encourage independent businesses and local organisations across our town centres to refresh their window displays and come up with a business plan to show how the prize money would be invested.
There are ten main prizes of £3,000 and the winners will be offered free advertising across Barnet Council’s business and community newsletters and social media channels as well as the chance to be part of the Discover Barnet campaign.
Who can enter
- be a small or micro business or organisation located within the London Borough of Barnet. The location and boundaries of the town centres are set out in the Barnet Local Plan: Development Management Policies DPD: Appendix 5
- have premises located on the ground floor
- be self-employed, a sole trader, a charity, a community interest company, a partnership or a limited company
- have no previous prosecutions for street trading offences and/or are currently under investigation for street trading offences
Any works undertaken to your shopfront must be done in accordance with the council’s Design Guidance
We will not accept applications from franchises.
If you have any questions about the competition, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org
How to enter
As part of the submission, you will be asked to fill in an application form including:
- before and after photographs of your window displays
- description of the improvements you intend to make and the expected completion date
- breakdown of how you would spend the £3,000 prize money with quotes or fees where possible.
Entries will be looked on favourably if they support local suppliers and contractors
The prize money will only be paid directly to the business bank account of the winning business or organisation on completion of the work set out in the business plan.
Evidence including photographs, receipts of invoices and other documentation will need to be sent to email@example.com
- 12pm, 13 August 2021: deadline for application forms
- 23 to 31 August 2021: Retail Revival will judge the window displays
- September 2021: competition winners will be announced
- March 2022: business plans implemented and prize money paid
Every entry will be judged based on 2 elements:
- Creating a refreshed window display: 50% of the score
- A business plan showing how the prize money will be invested: 50% of the score
Further detail on these elements can be found below.
Creating a refreshed window display: 50% of the score
Create a new window display that best highlights your products or services, the more creative the better. We will be looking for the best improvements by asking you to submit before and after photographs.
Here are some ideas of what you could include:
- create a display around a new theme, colour, or product line your store is offering
- curate a window that communicates the work your organisation does to support the local community
- create a new window decal or sign writing to update your look
We have teamed up with Retail Revival, experts in business support and merchandising, to judge the competition.
To help you get started, Retail Revival has created a webinar sharing best practice and tips to help create your new display.
Visual Display Checklist
Once all the submissions have been received, a representative from Retail Revival will visit each business to ask about the inspiration for the display and judge it using this Visual Display Checklist.
Visual Display Checklist ✓/✗
|General Standards External|
|Fascia and woodwork are in good order and clean|
|Canopy/awning works and is clean|
|Outside lighting is working and safe|
|Projecting sign is safe and well-fixed to the wall|
|Windows, frames, and threshold are clean|
|Internal window beds are clean and dust free|
|There is a visible address number|
|Window and door glass is safe and unbroken|
|External First Impression|
|There are not unnecessary stickers/signs on windows/frames|
|External signage is in keeping with brand identity|
|Signs are positioned neatly – no fastenings visible|
|Signs can be read in three seconds|
|Signs can be read from a distance of 1.5m|
|Signs can be read as the potential customer is moving|
|Display furniture is safe, clean, and functional|
|Stock is current, clean and in-date|
|Stock has accurate and clear price ticketing|
|Price tickets are consistent and fit with brand|
|Windows have an appropriate stock to space ratio|
|There are no breaks in sight lines|
|All merchandise can be clearly seen|
|The Focal Point|
|The focal point contains a key sales message, a prop, or the product|
|The focal point is appropriate for the direction of footfall|
|The display has an appropriate theme or selling message|
|Point of sale is current|
|The theme is highlighted using colour, props, or signage|
|The theme is obvious and well-presented|
|The display has a wow factor!|
If you wish to use the pavement space in the front of your business or organisation, you will be required to apply for a pavement licence.
For more information, check Pavement licences
A business plan showing how the prize money will be invested: 50% of the score
The winners of the Windows competition will receive £3,000 to re-invest in their business.
In the application form, you will be asked to submit a costed breakdown showing how you will spend the money, including quotes and fees for the proposed work.
Possible ways of investing:
- accessing business support training to improve services
- investing in apprenticeships, work experience and/or mentoring to help young people and the wider community develop skills and gain employment
- buying new equipment to diversify your offer
- interior re-painting or refitting
- hosting events or classes to extend your hours of operation
- establishing or enhancing your online presence/offer
- investing in signage; lighting; internal window display lighting; new shop window graphics; or visual merchandise
- giving your frontage a new lick of paint to improve its impact
- creating new branding and signage to give your shop a distinctive identity
- applying for a street trading license and buying temporary furniture to create a new outdoor seating area
- installing a new extendable canopy to cover your outdoor space
- making your commercial unit more accessible by installing disability ramps or accessible toilets
- making the space more family friendly by installing baby changing units
- reducing energy use by implementing energy saving measures
- reducing emissions by trading your transport vehicle for a hybrid or electric model
- improving your hygiene rating and signing up to the Healthier Catering Commitment
- signing up to public health schemes, such as Refill or Breastfeeding Welcome
Wider council priorities
When judging your entry, the panel will take into account the way that your investment will benefit the business, your customers and the wider town centre community as well as how it fits with wider council priorities.
You can read about our priorities in the Barnet Corporate Plan 2021 to 25
You may need to apply for Planning Permission or Listed Building Consent for works related to shop front alterations.
New adverts would require Advert Consent.
The prize money can’t be used to cover retrospective applications for work already completed or underway, or to cover any costs associated with the window displays to enter the competition.